King of the Cowboys (1943)

Passed   |    |  Music, Western

King of the Cowboys (1943) Poster

Saboteurs are blowing up government warehouses (during World War II). Roy and his pals work undercover to put an end to their operations.


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29 March 2017 | dougdoepke
Lesser Roy
Certainly not a western in the usual sense. In fact, horses aren't seen til the end, while there're many more suits than Stetsons. The programmer does manage a good flying fists sequence, but fast-shooting and hard-riding are at a bare minimum. There's little scenery, except for some familiar LA area locations. And likely, wartime restrictions discouraged shooting in Technicolor so we get b&w instead.

It's 1943, and I guess Republic wanted something contemporary having to do with the scheming Axis powers. But reviewer Plankton is right. The script is very poorly done, so it's hard to know who exactly who is up to what and why. There are some good moments such as action on the train trestle and some snappy audience lines during Mohr's psychic act. And that's along with a pretty good selection of western tunes, like Red River Valley. Of course, Mohr makes a first-rate baddie, and it's unusual to see short, stubby Corrigan in a serious part, a departure from his usual addle-pated comedic parts.

In my little book, it's a lesser Rogers entry, apparently before he met up with the sparkling Dale Evans or the golden stallion Trigger. But it should do for Rogers fans if you're not too insistent about your traditional westerns.

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